The Backseat Driver Ghost

The Backseat Driver Ghost

I remember first seeing this picture as a ten-year-old kid, when I was still in primary school. At the time we were allowed to take two books from the library a week, as a kind of school ‘treat’ (yeah – it was a rural school and it didn’t really have that much funding!).

Anyway, there was one book in particular that I used to go for – World’s Unexplained Mysteries (or something close to that title!).

It had a whole section on famous paranormal pictures, including The Brown Lady image and this one – The Backseat Driver Ghost.

I thought it was about time I covered this famous ghost image in an article…


The Visit

Mrs. Mabel Chinnery and her husband were visiting a cemetery in back in 1959, so that she could get a few photographs of her mother’s grave (why?).

Anyway, she took a few snaps of her mother’s resting place then spun around to take a quick picture of her husband, who was waiting in the car.

Pleased with the haul of photographs she had managed to take, the pair of them then returned home.


The Backseat Ghost Image

When the negatives were finally developed, the Chinnerys got a bit of a surprise…

A backseat ‘visitor’ had somehow joined the husband in the photo that Mabel had snapped…

The Backseat Ghost Image

Apparently, Mrs. Chinnery immediately recognized the image as that of her mother whose grave was quite close to where the car was parked.

The image became quite famous in paranormal circles, within a short space of time. It was eventually handed over to a photography expert who concluded that there was no double exposure or odd reflections at play.

You can definitely see the ghostly image of someone in the back seat of the car, but if I’m honest…you really can’t tell if it is male or female (well I can’t, anyway!).

What are your thoughts on this matter?

Do you think that this is the ghostly image of Mrs. Mabel Chinnery’s mother?

Do you think that this is a photographic fault or even a clever fake?

Please leave your thoughts and opinions in the comment section below.

4 thoughts on “The Backseat Driver Ghost

  1. Spooky! It looks like a man to me though. I have a theory on this. The car seems like an old fashioned town car, perhaps one that rich people used to get chauffeured around? Given the demeanour of the passenger, perhaps it was someone was rich during their life and recognized it as their chauffeur vehicle. Doesn’t it seem like he’s waiting to be driven around?

    1. It does yeah Sydney, good point! So you do believe it’s a ghost image…or you don’t? (hard to tell from your comment!)  🙂

  2. Hi there,

    That was quite frighting:) Well I don’t really believe in ghost because I’ve never seen one so far. I would say that someone has fake the picture. But what intrigues me is that at that period, I don’t think people knew how to fake a photo. 

    But if he was a ghost, then how come he is visible on the picture?

    Thank you for this excellent post!

    1. Hi there Daniella!

      Well, this isn’t the only image of a ghost – you do realise that cameras can pick them up right? In most circumstances, cameras manage to pick up what we don’t see with the naked eye! 

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